Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Texas Confederate license plates and other detritus

-- The latest developments (off again, on again, appeal again by Greg Abbott) in the Lone Star State's bid to reject the distribution of a vanity license plate commemorating our, ah, "Southern heritage" made me search the archives for the lively discussion between irregular poster Open Source Dem and conservative former blogger nee gadfly commenter Matt Bramanti.  It includes a rejoinder from former Progress Texas honcho Mark Corcoran, relating to OSD's criticism of them at the time.

As with the ongoing conflagration in the Middle East, I'm not taking any sides here.  I think vanity plates are fallen fruit for the state coffers, with rubes ripe for fleecing giving the state their money for nothing.  It seems to be more stupid than buying a hundred dollars' worth of lottery tickets, but the P.T. Barnum rule is in effect here.

Update: Socratic Gadfly with some related thoughts, and also Constitution Daily.

-- Hillary Clinton thinks that offices with fewer corners would be a good thing.

To the dismay of Jon Stewart, Hillary Clinton did not make her big announcement on "The Daily Show" on Tuesday.

The comedian and talk show host opened his interview with the former secretary of state and possible presidential candidate by praising her memoir, "Hard Choices," before pivoting to the question Clinton is asked everywhere she goes.

"It's an incredibly complex and well-reasoned and eyewitness view," Stewart said of the book. "I think I speak for everybody when I say no one cares. They just want to know if you're running for president. Are you?"

"I was going to make an announcement, but I saw ... you kind of spoiled it," Clinton replied. "So I have to reconsider where I go do it."

Stewart then rephrased his question, and asked if she would like to work in an office that has corners.

"You know, I think that the world is so complicated, the fewer corners that you can have, the better," Clinton said to applause from the studio audience.

So coy.

-- Some Democrats seem determined to push Elizabeth Warren in, despite her specific declinations.  This is silly season for this sort of thing, folks.  And this phase is going to last all the way into the middle of next year -- through the current election cycle, through the holidays, and well into the next session of the Texas Legislature.

This mentality is the reason that there are Irish betting services accepting wagers on the British Open in 2015.  And Las Vegas sports books taking bids on next January's Super Bowl champion.

It's still more pointless than trying to handicap next spring's Kentucky Derby, and the contestants are all less attractive.  If you want to play a game like this AND have some influence on changing the political system as it exists today, then work on convincing Bernie Sanders to run -- as either a Democrat or a Green.  Your choice.  You already have my opinion in this regard.  Sanders is a much better option (we need Warren in the Senate as bank watchdog), with a much greater likelihood of success (in influencing the system, not winning).

-- Speaking of banksters: Citigroup paid a $7 billion fine to the US government, and a few other injured parties, for their 2008 Mortgage Meltdown crimes.  That also bought them the right to say that they did nothing wrong.  They wanted to settle at $5 billion, Uncle Sam said ten, and like a couple of used car salesmen, they met in the middle.  When Citigroup announced higher-than-expected earnings as a result of the better deal they got on the fine, their stock went up dramatically, and so did the rest of the market.

The Corleone family ain't got nothin' on them.

-- One toon (there are so many good ones already this week that I'm having trouble winnowing the field):

1 comment:

Gadfly said...

The Clinton kiddo's raking in her own gravy train.

I'd vote Bernie if he were on the Green platform; don't see him running as a Dem.


On the license plates, I agree with Abbott's stance morally, but think he's wrong legally. There's a close parallel with precedent, various appellate circuits, from Adopt-a-Highway sponsorship signs.


And, per my pants-splitter post, when I saw that Slater piece in your blog post yesterday, and saw that last paragraph, that was it. If you see the texting code from that ad, let me know!